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View Diary: Eurocrats Unprepared For Dealing With Putin (163 comments)

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  •  There is no Warsaw Pact anymore, (9+ / 0-)

         why is there a NATO ?


    The free market is not the solution, the free market is the problem.

    by Azazello on Fri Mar 21, 2014 at 09:16:12 AM PDT

    •  NATO has certainly been transformed (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, commonmass, Azazello, koNko, native

      into something vastly different from its original purpose.

      •  certainly (7+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        commonmass, Azazello, AoT, koNko, Emmy, native, PhilK

        buy why is it that Russia being uncomfortable with this are being painted as the raving-warmongering-lunatics instead of a superpower that is defending itself against NATO'S moves?

        •  Because the west has bought the story (8+ / 0-)

          that it won the cold war fair and square. Putin refuses to follow that script and that makes him the bad guy.

        •  There's no move by NATO to go into Russian (0+ / 0-)

          territory.  NATO isn't bound by Russia's wishes. If Azerbijan wants to join NATO and NATO invited them to do that, why is that Russia's business?  And how is it an act of aggression against Russia?  Why do you want Russia to have veto power over NATO?

          Let me put it this way: Say the Bolivarian alliance or whatever it's called (includes US adversarial countries Venezuela, Bolivia, El Salvador, etc) wanted to expand all the way north to include Mexico, and Mexico wanted to join.  Why would that be our business?  Why would we consider such an act of aggression?  Why would be justified in annexing portions of Mexico to stop it?

          •  What U.S. would do in this hypothetical scenario (0+ / 0-)

            No, the U.S. wouldn't invade & annex chunks of Mexican territory as it did in the 19th century, or send the navy to occupy the port of Veracruz as it did in 1914. In any case, the Bolivarian alliance & Mercosur don't have anywhere near the economic heft & political unity of the EU & wouldn't pose much of a threat to American trade & economic interests, at least nothing on the level the threat that Russia sees in possible EU accession for Ukraine. But if the U.S. were to see such a threat, it would act similarly as the Russian government did vis-a-vis Ukraine before the overthrow of Yanukovich: threaten to close its markets to Mexican goods, then dangle some serious money in Mexico's face in the hopes that its government would reconsider, & then try to manipulate or strong-arm its politicians into making the "correct" decision.

      •  Indeed. (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Richard Lyon, AoT, Azazello, native, Lepanto

        For a brief time after the collapse of communism, NATO had no real purpose at all, but the U.S. was keen to keep it functioning because it was the primary mechanism for projecting U.S. power on that side of the world. It found a purpose, of sorts, in suppressing the ethnic wars that raged with the disintegration of Yugoslavia.

        But when NATO began to expand eastward, there was an implicit change in its mission: from containing communism to containing Russia. The expansion was initiated in 1996, a time when Russia was more or less democratic, in a socio-economic free fall & completely non-threatening to its neighbors. At the time the move lacked any real geostrategic justification, & in my opinion it seemed motivated by the personal agenda of Sec. of State Madeleine Albright (who is of Czech heritage), as well as the election-year desire of President Clinton to curry favor with Americans of eastern European descent. It is fully understandable that Russia would regard NATO as a hostile alliance & that it would, therefore, as a matter of policy, do everything it can to block further expansion, especially into the historically Russian heartland. Perhaps the trajectory of U.S.-Russia relations would have gone differently if this hadn't occurred, or not, but that is when the die was cast.

    •  Empire. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Richard Lyon, bmastiff, AoT, Azazello

      Ultimately, the raison d'être of large military organizations.

      Citation: history

      No one is coming to save us, the future is in our hands.

      by koNko on Fri Mar 21, 2014 at 09:55:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Goddamnit, we won the cold war (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko, Azazello

        We deserve to control everything! How could Russia stop us! We used the shock treatment on them and everything.

        If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

        by AoT on Fri Mar 21, 2014 at 09:57:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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